Why Not Just Queue Up Another Disney Trip? Link to New TR 6/24 p136!

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by MEK, Oct 3, 2011.

  1. Lady Lallie

    Lady Lallie DIS Veteran

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    Oh and when you are planning your trip to NH, just remember I live in Massachusetts so I am just a hop, skip and a jump from there. :goodvibes :rolleyes1
     
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  3. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Welcome Katie! Thanks so much for joining in. My W-burg trip was a blast and I am really looking forward to HHI!!!! Lots of pictures will be taken, I am sure.



    Welcome Dawn!

    Thanks for joining in. Of course you are behind, you've barely been back - what- a week?

    So what didn't you like about Myrtle Beach? Too commercial? I've never been so I have no idea, but I understand there's a lot of stuff to do there. Overkill, I'm sure.

    HHI is supposed to be great for golf. Booking a round for your husband would be a nice surprise. If I was a golfer I would totally want to do Disney golf.

    I will give you a little sneak preview and tell you that we stopped in Virginia Beach on the way home and it was fabulous. I so want to go there now!

    It is really hard to get anything during the first two weeks of December so I'm glad you got two nights consecutively. I stayed there during Christmas a few years ago and it is decorated really nicely. Not over the top, just tasteful with poinsettias everywhere. It's really such a pretty resort the way it is layed out. Everytime I go to DTD and see it, I miss it. But lately I have been on the rounds to try to stay everywhere on property! :laughing:


    Yes - 7months - 9am - that's the strategy!
     
  4. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    I would totally love to do that!!!! There are so many places in New England I want to see, not just the White Mountains. And I haven't been to Boston since I did a bike ride across Massachuesetts....and that was a LONG time ago. :rotfl: Such a pretty ride! I also want to visit the coast of Maine, so you would be a perfect stop!
     
  5. Lady Lallie

    Lady Lallie DIS Veteran

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    I will be your tourguide for the coast of Maine. Seriously beautiful, I miss Maine so much. I know I'm not far but I never end up doing everything I want too during the summers. Oh and when you come up, we MUST eat lobster rolls. I insist. :rotfl2:
     
  6. Pinkocto

    Pinkocto DIS Veteran

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    Is that because of the low points needed? Then I am super glad I was able to add a third night even though I had to rent some points to do it. I won't make that a habit, but it's a nice thing to be able to do when you have some points left but not enough for a whole night. Yep, it's also on my wish list to try all the resorts I can. Anyway, sorry to be talking so much about DVC, didn't mean to take over. :) Can't wait to hear more about your vacation!
     
  7. Moira222

    Moira222 Can't get enough of the Magic & Pixie Dust!

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    I love the idea of filling in for Nick's guitar lessons. plus you get to hold that over him later (oh, its not that hard, I've done it....). MUAAHAHAHAHA:rolleyes1
     
  8. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Yes - I am definitely the senior citizen of all the guitar students! Truth be told, he is much better at the bar chords then I will ever be. Kids - they learn things so easily! I'm surprised he isn't laughing at me.


    LL & Pinkocto - I did not see your posts until just a few minutes ago. Sorry. Not very observant, I'm afraid! Not sure why - anyway - see replies below!!!!!!
     
  9. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    I seriously feel like it should be Friday night, but it's only Thursday. One more work day this week.

    Sorry, I digress.

    So when I left off I had explained that our little mini August vacation was originally planned for the White Mountains, NH. But something or someone kept whispering in my ear saying, "not a good idea". Before I finally settled on Williamsburg as our final destination, I had explored several other locations. I considered Vermont, the coast of Maine, Rhode Island, Mystic Connecticut, and even Front Royal, Virginia (Shenandoah Valley). I was literally all over the map searching for places within an 8 hour drive and I spent FAR too much time selecting my final destination.

    I finally chose Williamsburg based on convenience of drive, location, distance, and, of course, the all important PRICE! This WAS supposed to be a budget friendly trip. All summer long I felt like I was forking over more money on something else Brian needed for college - new computer, new phone, new bedding, new towels, new clothes, new supplies....well - you get the idea.

    So we were set. I rented 3 nights at the Powhatan Resort through a Diamond Resort owner. I found him on VRBO and he must have enough points to rent out the better part of a year. My original 3 nights were 8/27 - 8/30. I rented a two bedroom for $360. Absolute best deal I could find. No brainer.

    So the plan was to drop Brian at college (Salisbury University), which is about 2 hours from our house, on Thursday August 25th. Friday would be a packing and shopping day. Being a budget friendly trip, I had planned to bring food for breakfast and lunch. Departure day was Saturday August 27th at 0700 sharp. We invited Nick's GF to go with us and I already warned her we would be leaving early.

    Well, no sooner had we set our plans in stone when we got the first inkling that Hurricane Irene might be a bit of a problem. I seriously wasn't that worried. No reason to panic prematurely, I thought. I figured I was going to Williamsburg come rain or shine. so I started googling "things to do in Williamsburg on a rainy day". And - indeed I found plenty of indoor activities.

    Well, by Wednesday, pre Irene, we were starting to get nervous. It did not look good at all. I contacted the gentleman I rented from to find out if would be possible to postpone or change things around, but I couldn't get a straight answer from him. His advice - Go inland, wait out the storm, then drive into Williamsburg. I toyed with the idea of leaving Friday night to do just that.

    On Thursday am we left to take Brian to school. It was a strange and emotional journey. Half way there Brian got very teary eyed. No - not because he was leaving us, but because this girl that he has had a crush on forever (which I didn't know) blew him off on the evening before he was supposed to leave. Brian, player that he is, really never let on that he was so attached to this one particular girl. I really felt terribly bad for him and was really at a loss for words on how to comfort him. He finally got himself together and said, "this is something I need to do and going away will be good for me".

    So - on this beautiful late summer day, as we finally pulled into the parking lot of SU to unload, we were informed by a security guard that all activities were canceled for the weekend and classes would not start until at least Wednesday. We were advised to check the website to see if students could return to campus on Monday. :scared1: Can you say stunned and shocked????? We were allowed to unload, but after that they basically wanted to clear the campus for the approach of Irene.

    It made sense - the campus is literally 30 mins/miles inland from Ocean City, Md. And the look on Brian's face was one of relief.

    So we went to work unloading and I did my mom thing trying to make his dorm organized and attractive. I never did take a picture of it because, just as I finished putting everything away, his roommate and parents arrived. By this time Brian was out meeting and socializing with people. He came back to help his roommate move in and then we left. Well, we went out to lunch and then drove home to wait out the next 36 hours until Irene arrived.

    I think this little set back worked in Brian's favor. I think he immediately felt comfortable there, so I knew his return in a few days would be less traumatic. I was bummed because I knew it would be another couple nights of him hanging out with his friends who had not left home for college. I wanted him to break free of that gang.

    Well - you all know the tale of Irene, but you don't know what happened with my reservation.

    I have to take a break now to go to a friends, but I will pick up right where I left off later tonight - with pictures!

     
  10. dawnbu40

    dawnbu40 DIS Veteran

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    It sounded like such a hassle to take Brian and then find out he couldn't stay. I'm glad it ended up working out well for him. :)

    Looking forward to hearing more and seeing the pictures!
     
  11. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    It was a drag, but it was so much easier to drop him off when he finally did go back. And - it made me realize that there were a couple things he needed for his dorm room.

    I am getting to pictures now!!!!! Finally!
     
  12. Roxychica7

    Roxychica7 DIS Veteran

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    Hi MEK! I followed you over from Jenjolt, Jackie and LL's previous trips! Love your 3 in one trip report! We've been down to Disney every December since 2005 and this year we'll be there 12-12 to 12-18! :thumbsup2
     
  13. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Continued......

    On our way home after NOT dropping Brian off I sent an email to the gentleman I rented my W-burg reservation from and told him there was no way we would be able to arrive on Saturday. I tried to find out again if we were going to be completely out of the money or if we could reschedule. He just replied, "I'll work with you". The next day I even called the resort to see if they had any suggestions. They said the ressie would be fine if the gentleman I rented from had their trip insurance plan. I tried to email him to find out, but again I couldn't get a straight answer.

    So Irene came and went and my reservation was still in limbo. Fortunately, we never lost power, cable, internet, phone, nothing. And we had no flooding. By Sunday afternoon the worst was over and I tried to reach my VRBO gentleman telling him that I wanted to leave for W-burg the next day and I tried to find out if he was able to reschedule for me. Just when I had given up on him, I got an email stating that he could reschedule for me, but I needed to call the next morning to see if the resort had its power restored.

    But prior to that we needed to make another executive decision. If we left on Monday, Nick was going to miss more pre season that originally planned. He point blank told me he no longer wanted to go. And you know what - with the reservation being up in the air and not being 100% sure where we were even going to sleep, I completely understood his position. What if we got down there and I had to rent two hotel rooms for all of us to sleep? My budget friendly vacation would no longer be budget friendly.

    Denny & I finally decided that IF my VRBO man came through with a new reservation AND the power was restored, we would just go ourselves. It's not like me to leave Nick home alone, but I felt marginally confident about it because (1) he is very responsible and (2) my neighbor (who was supposed to feed the cats) said she would call him daily and come over to house to check on things. I also gave her a replica of his schedule so she could anticipate his comings and goings.

    So on Sunday August 28th I went to bed without packing for the trip. I just couldn't make myself do it when I knew there might not be a trip. To make maters worse, Brian went to spend the evening with one of his friends (who happens to be a girl, but not a GF). When I texted him at 10:30pm he never responded and when he still hadn't responded 90 minutes later, I went to look for him. Fortunately, I found his car there, but I couldn't believe he would do that on the evening before he left for school. Needless to say, I didn't get much sleep that night and was up at the brink of dawn. I drove back over to his friend's house, knocked on the door at 6:30am, and woke everyone up to make sure he was OK. I guess they all thought I was crazy, but I didn't care. When I saw how upset he got on the day we originally left for school, I got worried that he was going to chicken out or that he was really depressed or something. I guess my mind just started to go into its worry mode.

    So, back to the story. I called the Powhatan resort at 8am Monday morning and they confirmed power. It was then that I finally started to pack. I'm sure the three of us didn't get in the car until close to 10 am. On the way down to Salisbury I called my VRBO man and told him we were going. He finally gave me a confirmation number. He actually told me the reservation was for 4 nights, but unfortunately we could only stay three.

    Here's a picture I tried to take from the back seat of the car as we were entering the campus:

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    Dropping Brian back at school was a breeze since everyone was already moved in. We brought back a rug and a table for the TV. After we walked that into the dorm we said our good-byes and left.

    I had Denny take a quick cell phone picture before we went into the dorm.

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    You can tell I was really tired because I couldn't even quite manage a smile. The whole weekend and the two trips to school and the evening stalking my son and the vacation drama had taken its toll.

    Once we said our goodbyes I grabbed my camera from the back seat and decided I could at least take 5 minutes to take some pictures of the campus.

    Brian's dorm is the one on the left (2nd floor, corner room)

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    Here are some more campus shots:

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    These pictures were all taken right near that parking lot you saw in the first pictures. In other words, I didn't walk too far in any direction. I knew Denny would not have been happy if I disappeared to take pictures, plus I wanted to free up our parking space and I was seriously ready for our mini vacation to start.

    Bye Salisbury

    Next Stop - Random Md Visitor's Center before entering Virginia. I wasn't about to start looking for a bathroom on campus. This was much easier.

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    I put the camera away until we were almost at the Bay Bridge tunnel. If you have ever driven down Rt 13 on the Delmarva Peninsula you know there isn't really much to look at.

    I did think this house was picture worthy.....

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    We did stop for groceries and booze to break up the monotony of Rt 13. And you know I am a sucker for grocery stores that sell wine and beer since that doesn't happen in the tri-state area where I live.

    Finally.....

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    If you have never had the pleasure of crossing the CBBT (Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel) then here is some info you might enjoy reading:
    http://www.cbbt.com/facts.html

    It's 20 miles long and claims to be an engineering marvel, which indeed it is. It is mostly bridge, but has two distinct tunnels.

    Here are a few of my pictures:

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    Tunnel # 1
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    Continued in Next Post.......



     
  14. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Continued......

    Tunnel # 2

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    The end in sight

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    Boats near Virginia Beach

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    Hampton, VA

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    Finally a road sign for our final destination

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    We finally arrived to the Powhatan Resort around 5pm or so....... with about a gagillion other people who were all checking in at the same time.

    Bad Cell Phone Picture

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    I was in line for at least a 1/2 hour, but I can't complain. Everyone was patient and the people working there were very nice. I managed to get through the line and escape the concierge desk, where I think they hit you up with the timeshare speech in exchange for free tickets or other perks.

    Denny and I had a 2BR condo on the ground floor with an in room hot tub. Score! We also found out that the reservation was good until a Saturday check-in. OMG, how hard it was going to be to leave on Thursday.

    Here are some pictures of the condo

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    I know these pictures are not awesome because I was just too lazy to change my lens. sorry!

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    View from the back deck

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    Outside

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    Close up of living room picture

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    I am going to have to stop here because I can't get the rest of my cell phone pics to upload directly to photobucket. Too late in the evening to start trouble shooting.

    When I continue I actually have some dinner pics on my phone, so stay tuned for our first dinner in W-burg and our next really cool, fun day.




     
  15. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    Welcome Roxychica7! Thanks so much for joining in. Looks like our September trips overlap. Very Cool! How great to be able to travel to disney every December. This will be my second December trip and I think its a fabulous time of year for a visit!

    Not only will we be at the world at the same time, but how funny that you posted just as I was writing about the Eastern Shore of MD!
     
  16. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    I don't know how I missed this post! DOH! That sounds so wonderful!!!! I would love a tour guide. Oh yeah - I remember looking at Portsmouth NH as a possible destination. I tell you, I really was all over the map!

    Didn't you used to live in Maine? I think the coastline of Maine is spectacular and I have really only seen the southern tip. Some day I am going up to Acadia and I would love to keep going right to Nova Scotia.

    I love lobster rolls! YUM!!!!


    Sorry - I missed this post too. Double DOH!

    Yes - I think its because its low point season coupled with a fact that the parks are decorated for Christmas and the weather is cool.

    I love to talk DVC, so talk away. I am far from an expert, but I am a huge fan. It definitely adds to the enjoyment of a vacation.

    Anyway - finally got a real update with pictures in!
     
  17. Stringbean&Wingnut

    Stringbean&Wingnut DIS Veteran

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    I definitely felt like yesterday should have been Friday too! I'm sitting here like...but why isn't it Saturday? It really should be...:laughing:

    Wow, that definitely sounds like you had quite a few things going on during that hurricane weekend! I'm glad that Brian got moved in and settled eventually, how is he enjoying it there now? It looks like a nice campus (at least, from that parking lot :laughing:)

    I'm so happy that you guys did make it to Williamsburg!!! :cool1: That must have been driving you nuts to not know until the very last minute! I can't wait to see more pics! :goodvibes
     
  18. SoonerGirl

    SoonerGirl DIS Veteran

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    The campus at Salisbury looks lovely! I just can't imagine at this point leaving my son at college, but I know I need to start preparing for it because I'm sure these next few years are going to fly by. We are actually within commuting distance to Oklahoma University, maybe he'll just go there and stay at home - fingers crossed!

    Glad you finally made it to Williamsburg! Your condo looks lovely!
     
  19. MEK

    MEK DIS Veteran

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    I honestly kept thinking yesterday was Friday night and then I had to remember - DRAT - its only Thursday! :headache: Oh well - at least tonight IS finally Friday night! :cool1:


    Within 6 hours of arriving there he texted me to say "I love college". :rotfl2: I texted back, "I bet you do since your classes havent even started yet". But seriously, he really loves the school. He was hesistant at first because a couple people told him he wouldn't like it there. But I have honestly only heard good things about the school. It's only about 8500 students, so its not huge, nor is it small. I think its the perfect size for him. I hope he does OK academically. We set a minimum GPA for him and told him we can't pay if he doesn't meet that. We'll see!

    Until I had that confirmation number in my hand I was very unsettled, but at that point I was willing to just rent a cheap room somewhere. That's how bad I wanted/needed this break.

    It is a very pretty campus. I didn't walk around enough to get pictures of the "real" buildings. But its compact and very esthetically pleasing.

    Yes - the 4 years of high school fly. We knew Brian couldn't stay home though. We had some issues with him over the past 18months and it wouldn't have been the right thing. For his own maturity, I think he needs this experience of living outside of the home.

    When Nick leaves (two years) that is going to be VERY strange. I need to start preparing myself for that!

    I was so relieved to get there. The condo was very nice. I think we had a remodeled one. It's no Disney, but the price was certainly right!:thumbsup2
     
  20. Lady Lallie

    Lady Lallie DIS Veteran

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    I grew up in Maine. In Kittery actually which is right across from Portsmouth, NH. Marc & I actually were married in Portsmouth. Acadia is gorgeous, simply stunning, especially at this time of year with the leaves changing colors. :goodvibes I miss living in Maine, someday I am going to move back.

    I am so jealous you went to Williamsburg, Marc and I have been talking about going there for the last two years but we have just not found the time or money to go. I'm really looking forward to your pictures and hearing on how you liked it.
     
  21. Pinkocto

    Pinkocto DIS Veteran

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    What a pain in the rear that Irene caused! So sorry about the stress with the reservations. But what a nice outcome that you got some alone time with the hubbie!
     

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